We already knew that the NSA had developed a taste for intercepting packages to put backdoors in electronics. Now, it turns out that those hacks provide it with almost complete access to the iPhone too.
Documents shared by security researcher Jacob Appelbaum and German magazine Der Spiegel reveal that the NSA can spy on almost every communication sent from Apple's phones. Using software called DROPOUTJEEP, the NSA can: intercept SMS messages, access contact lists, locate a phone using cell tower data, and even activate the device's microphone and camera.
Sadly, the leaked documents report a 100 per cent success rate with its iPhone spyware, though also point out that the hack requires physical contact with a device to install it. As we already know, though, that's no barrier for the Agency, and the document also suggests a remote version is in the works.
If it all sounds a little too good to be true for the NSA, then Jacob Appelbaum has a theory. "Either [the NSA] have a huge collection of exploits that work against Apple products, meaning they are hoarding information about critical systems that American companies produce, and sabotaging them," he explained at a recent conference. "Or Apple sabotaged it themselves."Oh. Dear. [Daily Dot]
Update: Apple has responded these claims, telling AllThingsD it has no knowledge of such a backdoor.